Is your business safe to stay open during the resurgence of COVID-19? Questions to ask yourself as you determine if you should re-close your business.
The promise of regaining a sense of normalcy seemed just within reach as states began to re-open daily operations.
Due to a spike of coronavirus cases across the country, states are pausing or rolling back their reopening plans to get a handle on the outbreak.
What does this mean for your business? We outlined a few helpful guidelines as you wrestle with the possibility of re-closing your business during the coronavirus resurgence. Our hope is that you find this article helpful as you navigate what is best for your business.
Are employees testing positive for COVID-19?
If you have employees that have recently tested positive then it’s vital that your decision is made with that in mind.
How high is the outbreak in your workplace? Are employees taking all precautions while they are at work to protect themselves and others?
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has outlined best practices for screening that employers should follow. Is your business following those guidelines consistently and fully?
Your business has most likely sent those employees with COVID-19 symptoms home and encouraged them to be tested. Those that test positive are ideally in quarantine for 14 days. If the COVID-19 outbreak among employees is increasing with best practices in place then it’s best to prioritize the health of your staff and community by re-closing your business.
Is there a spike of COVID-19 cases in the area?
The resurgence in cases of states that have reopened is jarring. Cases have spiked in some states from the reopening of water parks, beaches, and large venue activities. The numbers also show that numbers are spiking among restaurant workers and other small businesses.
“Know your surroundings” by remaining updated on the coronavirus cases in your community. Cases in your immediate area don’t just present a risk to your employees, but your employees could also prove to be a risk to your community. Since most COVID-19 carriers are asymptomatic, it’s best to factor more cases into those that have been officially diagnosed.
What is the nature of your business?
The mandatory closing of bars, restaurants, and other small businesses during the first influx of the coronavirus hurt many small businesses financially. Now that we as a country understand the severity of COVID-19, we have the opportunity to make informed decisions. We also know now that businesses demonstrated so much ingenuity and agility during the first phase.
- Will you be able to run your business with adjustments?
- Is your business niche able to thrive online?
- Would your business be able to offer curbside pickup or contactless delivery?
If so, you may be able to operate your business in a way that keeps employee and customer safety first while still generating revenue.
Does your state have any mandates related to COVID-19?
Sometimes the disconnect between state procedures and local county procedures can be vast. Make sure that you are up to date on both. As we all navigate a new norm and possibly a second shutdown, it’s important to know your governor’s policy and your town or city’s rules of operation.
The CDC is also updating best practices on a regular basis so it’s vital to keep up to date on the most effective disinfecting procedures, employee policies to implement, and new information we learn about the spread of COVID-19.
If your state deems your business non-essential or puts new restrictions on your business then ask your team how you could best adapt to those changes. Online sales may be an option for some, but may not be cost-effective for all since it’s such an involved process to list and ship items.
So, should you re-close your business?
After working through the questions above, did you find that you felt comfortable keeping your business open? If state and local policies are allowing you to stay open and your local cases haven’t spiked then it’s vital that you implement the CDC’s safety guidelines.
If your business could operate online then it’s worth making the most of that rare opportunity and temporarily close the doors to your brick and mortar business. Remain updated on COVID-19 cases in your area and statewide. This will help guide you in making an informed decision.
We empathize with you and understand the toll that coronavirus is having on small businesses. We wish your business and your family the best as you navigate this resurgence.